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CS visits Water Supplies Department and Government Laboratory to learn more about water quality testing (with photos)

     The Chief Secretary for Administration, Mrs Carrie Lam, this afternoon (August 13) visited the Water Supplies Department (WSD) and the Government Laboratory (GL) to learn more about their work on water quality monitoring and testing, particularly in regard to incidents of lead in drinking water in public estates.

     Mrs Lam first visited the extension of the Mainland East Laboratory of the WSD at Sha Tin Water Treatment Works. Accompanied by the Director of Water Supplies, Mr Enoch Lam, she was briefed by the Chief Chemist of the WSD, Mr Chan Kin-man, on the Water Science Division's work on water quality monitoring. Samples are collected from receiving points of Dongjiang water, water gathering grounds, impounding reservoirs, water treatment works, service reservoirs and distribution mains for testing to ensure Hong Kong's treated fresh water complies with the World Health Organization's Guidelines for Drinking-water Quality. Mrs Lam also visited the Division's laboratory to better understand the operation of the inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometer, which is an advanced instrument for testing lead content in drinking water.

     Accompanied by the Government Chemist, Dr Sin Wai-mei, Mrs Lam then visited the laboratory of the GL at Ho Man Tin Government Offices to learn more about the laboratory testing and support services provided by the GL. Mrs Lam also took the opportunity to view the equipment for testing drinking water and lead content in soldering materials, and to understand more about the use of the X-ray fluorescence spectrometry technique for detecting lead on the surfaces of objects being tested.

     During the visits, Mrs Lam commended the staff of the WSD's Water Science Division and the GL for their dedication, perseverance and professionalism despite the surge in workload due to the incidents of lead in drinking water in public estates. She encouraged them to continue to serve the community, ensuring the safety of drinking water for the protection of public health.

     The WSD and the GL have rendered full support to the Government's follow-up actions for the incidents of lead in drinking water in public estates. Professionals and technical staff from other divisions have been redeployed to provide support. With their professional expertise, in addition to testing lead content levels in drinking water, they also provide technical support and research for the investigation of the incidents involving excessive lead content in drinking water.

Ends/Thursday, August 13, 2015
Issued at HKT 16:08


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